Over 90% of people hope to stay in their homes as they age. However, moving elderly parents into your home, may become necessary when circumstances compromise an aging parent‘s ability to function alone. They could be diagnosed with a debilitating illness or suffer a serious accident that limits their ability to care for themselves. Or their advanced age might just require them to have a caregiver or family member in the home.
This is something almost everyone experiences with an aging parent at some point. And there are a few options available to you when the time comes, you could:
- Find a long-term living facility or nursing home where professionals will provide the kind of care they need.
- Remodel their current living space and hire help to meet their needs.
- Invite them to move in with you, which could mean making home renovations for them or building a new granny pod.
In this post, we’ll focus on that last option, covering a number of things that you should think about before going forward with it.
Before Moving Elderly Parents into Your Home
Multi-generational living is not only a growing trend today, but also one of the best ways for adult children to get to know and bond with an aging parent in an entirely new way. However, as much as moving your parent into your home has numerous benefits, the new living situation will have an impact on the entire family including a spouse.
It is sad but true, that if you do not have a good relationship with your parent, taking care of them in your home will require careful planning if it is to have any chance of working. Before you embark on a journey to have your aging parent move in take some time to consider the following.
Safety will be a major concern when caring for elderly parents
As your parent continues to age, their risk of falling and seriously injuring themselves at home increases. This means that you may have to make modifications to your own home to accommodate your parent.
Many home technologies are available now to assist with safety as well. For example, if you have a two-story home, you will want to eliminate the need for your parent to go to the second floor. This may mean creating a living space on the first floor that doesn’t currently exist.
It may also mean smaller changes, such as installing grab bars and non-slip flooring in a bathroom, handicapped-accessible toilets, replacing a bath with a wheelchair accessible walk in shower, or a home monitoring system that can alert you to emerging concerns.
We are a Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS), familiar with what’s required to remodel and build accessible and safer space.
More of your time will likely be spent as a caregiver
Your parent might require your support or that of a caregiver in several different ways. It’s important to understand how this will impact your daily living, quality of life, and mental state. Consider how you can arrange for home care support. Avoid the fatigue of taking care of ‘everyone’, and allow yourself to take breaks and enjoy free time.
You might have to hire a caregiver
One option for additional support is a professional home health aide. In some cases, your insurance will cover certain types of medically necessary support. In other cases, you may have no coverage for in-home help. Take the time to understand what’s covered and what’s not, so if it becomes necessary to have a higher level of care the financial arrangement is in place. This is particularly important if an older adult is suffering from alzheimer‘s and requires help from someone familiar with dementia care.
You will lose some privacy
The transition to multi-generational living will likely cause you to give up some level of privacy in your home. Moreover when a parent moves in with adult children it brings with it a whole host of different issues related to autonomy. That being said, it is possible to redesign the floor plan of your home to give each family member the privacy they deserve. And building an external granny pod may be the best option to preserve privacy.
Two homes, one price
Asking your parent to live with you can be a terrific way to reduce housing expenses for both of you, because together you will be paying for one home (and all that goes with it) instead of two. Make sure you have this discussion with your parent before moving them in, though. You may have one idea of how finances will be handled, while they have a completely different one. It’s always a good idea to avoid potential tension or resentment over money issues, and a parent’s feeling of dependence.
Your parent will probably be happier living with you
The joy and warmth that comes with multi-generational living reduces the chance of depression and other negative feelings related to loneliness and isolation for older family members.
Your parent may respond better to care at home
Many seniors are more compliant to medication and other medical requirements when they know that their children are watching over them. They also tend to eat better. On top of that, loved ones often take better care of the health and maintenance needs of their parents when they live together.
Strengthened family bond
Having your parent in your home creates a unique level of closeness and love in the family. If you have children, it gives them a fantastic opportunity to get to know their grandparent and be involved in each other’s lives.
Your home will be safer and more valuable.
This is one of the big things that many people don’t consider, but a home modifications for older adults also makes the space safer for everyone who lives there. Additionally, the renovations often include expanding the home or updating a bathroom, adding new technology, and other updates, which add value to the home when it comes time to sell.
Starting to think about the possibility of moving elderly parents into your home ?
Get in touch with us to get guidance on what is necessary to taking care of an elderly parent in your home: from making the space safe and livable, to planning the transition for the entire family. We can help with home modifications for the elderly or disabled as well as finding care and technology solutions.